Solving America's Energy Crisis
by Dave Foreman
Americans are on a desperate searchfor alternative sources of fuel. Not fortheir cars and homes, but rather forthemselves. Our overly-active lifestyles, highstressjobs, on-the-run nutrition, inadequatesleep and lack of proper supplementationhave created a serious energy shortage amonga large majority of Americans. As always, my Four Pillars of Great Health can play animportant role in solving this growingnationwide health crisis.
WHY AM I SO TIRED?
What exactly is happening in the body to cause us to feel so tired so often? Constant anxiety, lack of exercise and poor nutrition weaken our adrenal glands. The adrenals are small triangular glands located on top of both kidneys and are responsible for a host of bodily functions including helping us adapt to stress and fatigue. Over time, the body can no longer "catch up" and recover from the daily assaults brought on by burning the candle at both ends (and sometimes in the middle, too). Fatigue is probably one of the most not able signs that the body has had enough.
THE FOUR PILLAR PICK-ME-UP
Creating a personalized plan around my Four Pillars of Great Health (Diet, Exercise, Mental Health, and Supplementation) can significantly and immediately impact your individual energy crisis.
A good first step is to eliminate caffeine, tobacco, and refined foods (sugar, white foods, etc.) from your diet. Getting checked for food allergies to ingredients like gluten, an often overlooked source of fatigue, is also a great start.
Next, try adding greens to your diet. A supplement like Greens Plus or New Chapter's Berry Green is a great addition to your meal plan. Greens act to purify the body and promote increases in energy and well-being. It is a win-win all around!
Exercise may seem like a silly thing to recommend to someone who is tired, but believe it or not, increased activity will decrease fatigue and improve your energy. Exercise helps reduce anxiety which in turn allows your body to recover from the daily rigors of life. A simple 25 to 30 minute brisk walk per day can help you lose weight, lower fatigue, stress and blood pressu re, plus help you boost immune function.
MAKE OVER YOUR MIND
The state of your mental health plays a huge role in fatigue and the ability to manage stress. If you have problems falling asleep at night, try my A to Z method of sleeping. For each letter of the alphabet, think of something you are thankful for -(e.g. A - Adam and Amanda-my children, B - Birds of prey,my favorite type of bird).You get the idea; soothing thoughts and rest go hand in hand.
SUPER ENERGIZING SUPPLEMENTS
The area that will make the most immediate impact on your energy crisis is supplementation. Special needs supplements (as a part of the Dietary Supplement Pyramid) not only help build up your energy stores, but also help alleviate fatigue. In order to help reconstruct your energy stores, we need to look at a few key nutrients: B-5 (also known as Pantothenic Acid), Phosphatidylserine, Licorice, Melatonin, L-theanine and B-complex.This may sound like a ton of supplements, but if you really wish to get your energy back to full capacity, using this arsenal of nutrients may be necessary.
Vitamin B-5 (pantothenic acid) helps to activate the adrenal glands. A prolonged depletion of B-5 can lead to headaches, fatigue and sleep disturbances. It also plays an important role in he production of energy within your cells.
Phosphatidylserine (PS) provides serine, a precursor to the formation of many neurotransmitters. By supplying the tools the nervous system needs, you are more likely to stay emotionally in balance and suffer from less fatigue. Newer forms of PS such as Alpha-GPC (Alpha-glycerylphosphorylcholine) can also provide a similar benefit.
Licorice root, known to stimulate and nourish the adrenal glands, is used in many Chinese herbal prescriptions. It has also been used for more serious conditions such as Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. A word of caution - prolonged use of licorice root can lead to increases in blood pressure and contribute to fluid retention.
Melatonin, known as the sleep hormone, is naturally occurring in the body and can improve circadian rhythm and help you fall asleep faster. Prolonged, deep sleep is essential for your body to fully rest and recover.
L-theanine is an amino acid found primarily in green and white tea that helps produce a calming effect in the brain. I often say that this is why green and white tea can cause a restful alertness (due to low levels of caffeine and L-theanine). L-theanine helps control mood which in turn will aid the body in dealing with stress.
Since I preach never to take one B-vitamin by itself, you need to make sure you are getting the synergy provided by taking all of the B-vitamins together in complex form. Also, other B-vitamins like folic acid, B-6 and B-12 will have a positive effect on your fight against fatigue.
THE QUICKER FIXER-UPPERS
For those who are looking for a quick fix that is natural, try Green and White Tea Extract by New Chapter. I find that the low, naturally occurring levels of caffeine and L-theanine provide you with a quick boost of energy. I often call the feeling you get with this product "restful alertness."
If I were suffering from an energy crisis, I would choose Enzymatic Therapy's Fatigued to Fantastic products. Not only will you enjoy immediate impact nutritional support, but you will also get the proper nutrients to help rebuild depleted stores.Within this line is one of the best sleep formulas available on the market. If you really want to get out of the hole, I would highly recommend this must-take product line.
Many of us suffering from an "energy crisis" seem to look for that short term solution. Perhaps a stop at your favorite coffee shop or at the local vending machine has been your answer in the past. Remember that your energy depletion didn't happen overnight and fixing it won't happen immediately either. This is a lifestyle choice. By following my Four Pillars of Great Health, you will be well on your way to regaining your energy and feeling fantastic.